Real Estate Photography FAQs

Real Estate Photography FAQs

Why use a professional real estate photographer?

More than 90% of all home buyers begin their search online, and just like any other kind of online shopping, buyers use images to quickly filter through results and decide which listings are worth the time to review more carefully, and add to their showing list. High quality photos not only generate more interest in your listings, and help prospective buyers form an emotional attachment to house, but they also separate you from your competition. Let’s face it, all agents are slapping photos on the MLS and using their brokerage’s default marketing. What are you doing to truly make your listings and yourself stand out from the crowd?

Yes, but I have a good camera, can’t I do this myself?

We love when agents ask this question! Just like buying professional cookware doesn’t make you Wolfgang Puck, having a professional dSLR doesn’t mean your photos will look as good as a professionals’ images. You wouldn’t advise a friend to sell FSBO would you? Same idea. Our StylishDetroit photographers have years of experience, and understand how to highlight the best features of a listing. And a good camera is only one tool, equally important is lens choice, and post production. We also use a unique multi-exposure process which is more sophisticated than HDR to increase the dynamic range of our images. This means that every detail will stand out in your images.

What will a professional real estate shoot cost me?

Most shoots average $175, but the price depends on things like the amount of square footage photographed, any upgrades ordered, and the distance to the home. Please see our pricing page for more information.

Do I need to meet you at the property?

While the agent doesn’t necessarily have to be there, we prefer that someone is present at occupied homes, so they can answer questions, and do any adjustments we request. The photographer will not touch any personal property or make adjustments – like opening a patio umbrella or fluffing pillows, etc. We also really like to meet our clients face-to-face, so we suggest that you at least come the first time you hire us, and for future assignments we can meet the homeowners or your assistant.

How should the home be prepared for the shoot?

We have a detailed PDF you’ll be emailed when you book your first shoot with room-by-room suggestions you can share with your homeowner. The overall cleanliness and styling of the home can have a big impact on the images so it’s worth having a conversation with the homeowner about it. If you have a listing that’s full of clutter, feel free to make us the “bad guy” and tell them what the photographer recommends.

All flat surfaces should be as free from clutter as possible, and personal items should be tucked away. All interior lights should be on, including lamps and under-cabinet lighting. TVs and ceiling fans should be turned off. For high end home theatres with projectors, it’s suggested to have a movie loaded and paused so there’s a static image on the screen. Choose your movie wisely. :)

What is your policy on rainy days, or to re-shoot exteriors with season changes?

We want to provide you with the best photos possible, which show the property in a positive way. Extremely dark overcast days, or rainy or snowy days will not result in the kind of bright, cheerful photos you’ll want for marketing your listing. When it makes sense, we will suggest re-scheduling on days the weather is not cooperating. Remember, a dark day also means the natural light indoors will be limited as well.

If a listing simply MUST go on the market, and the shoot can’t be delayed, the photographer will do his/her best to create the best images possible. 

Exteriors can be re-photographed at a later date to produce a more pleasing exterior photo or do a seasonal update for $75.

How long will the process take? When do I get images?

Generally shoots last 30 – 90 minutes, depending on the size of the home and the scale of the shoot. Images are ready for download 24-48 hours after the shoot.

How are the images delivered?

Images will be available for download on our custom client website, and you can easily download images sized in a number of formats, so you have the right size for the MLS, your blog, or for print, without the hassle of having to re-size them yourself.

How can I use these images? Do I own the copyright?

StylishDetroit retains the copyright of all images, with is standard for professional photography studios. Agents who commission shoots will be granted a license to use the images on the MLS, and websites that aggregate MLS data, like realtor.com, trulia, etc. Additionally, you can use these images for flyers, on your website, blog and in your personal marketing materials. For larger scale advertising use, please contact us first.

Homeowners have no rights to the images unless they have commissioned the shoot. 

In the event that your listing expires and another agent re-lists the home, they are NOT authorized to use the images you commissioned. Please contact both StylishDetroit and your MLS in that instance.

For builders, developers, and architectural firms, usage beyond typical MLS/web marketing must be discussed with us.

When do I pay? What payment methods do you accept?

Payment is due on or before the shoot. No images will be delivered prior to payment. We accept cash, check, PayPal and credit cards. Please make checks payable to Andrew Schwartz.

Do you do headshots or any other types of photography?

Glad you asked! StylishDetroit does offer headshots on location. We can do both “traditional” headshots with a clean white or dark background, or a more modern “lifestyle” session that can be done in your office, or out on location to create a variety of images to use for your personal branding and marketing. Our sister company, West Park Photography, offers high quality wedding coverage.